Catch fish with Mike Ladle.

Catch Fish with
Mike Ladle

Information Page


For anyone unfamiliar with the site always check the FRESHWATER, SALTWATER and TACK-TICS pages. The Saltwater page now extends back as a record of over several years of (mostly) sea fishing and may be a useful guide as to when to fish. The Freshwater stuff is also up to date now. I keep adding to both. These pages are effectively my diary and the latest will usually be about fishing in the previous day or two. As you see I also add the odd piece from my friends and correspondents if I've not been doing much. The Tactics pages which are chiefly 'how I do it' plus a bit of science are also updated regularly and (I think) worth a read (the earlier ones are mostly tackle and 'how to do it' stuff).

04 June 2007

Back to bassing.

It's always pleasant to go fishing but sometimes it's hard work as well. Last week I went to the coast with one of my email correspondents Tony Yeates. Now we'd never met before but we both arrived at the parking place more or less together at four a.m. When we arrived there were a couple of surfers waiting in their van for it to get light (and they said we were crackers!!!!) so the writing was on the wall. We tackled up and walked down to the sea but a huge swell was driving up the shore and I could see that the conditions were more or less hopeless for fishing if not for surfing.

I made a spot decision to try another place only half-a-mile or so along the coast where we would (I hoped) be sheltered by the cliff. Sure enough it was reasonably calm at the new spot but by now it was getting light and we needed to get our lures into the water. On approaching the sea the first thing we noticed was a distinctly unpleasant smell. A closer look showed that the water, although calm, was frothing and looking distinctly brownish. Of course it was a bloom of marine algae - never a good sign for fishing in my experience. Whether it is the stinking water that deters fish or whether the presence of the algae simply indicates the absence of grazing plankton (=fish food) I'm not sure but I'm never encouraged by these conditions.

By now the pressure of time meant that we had little choice so we decided to give it a go. After half-an-hour of biteless flogging we were getting a little despondent then I had a knock. It was not much of a bite but I knew that there were no snags in the area I was fishing so I was confident that it had been a fish (isn't braided line wonderful). I mentioned the bite to Tony and we flogged on, slightly encouraged. It was probably another twenty minutes before I had another bite and this time the fish was on. It took the plug at maximum range and immediately splashed on the surface - surely a bass. I shouted to Tony and played the fish in and through the boulders to the shore. It was no monster but a very satisfying catch considering the conditions.

I took a few pictures and we fished on but no more bites were forthcoming and by now the sun was well up so we packed in and went home for breakfast.

If you haven't signed the bass petition yet, please go to Saltwater page 168 and do it now.

If you have any comments or questions about fish, methods, tactics or 'what have you.'get in touch with me by sending an E-MAIL to -

Algal bloom.

Tony's still well back from the sea's edge sorting out his gear but the smell of the algae filled the entire beach.


Look at that foam.  Organic surfactants (detergents) produced by the algae are responsible.  There's also a lot of seaweeed 'salad' on the shore.

My bass.

No monster but a real bonus in these conditions.

Back it goes.

Tony returns my fish to the sea for me.